Date of Award

2021

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)

Department

Communication

First Advisor

Qingwen Dong

First Committee Member

Teresa Bergman

Second Committee Member

Graham Carpenter

Abstract

Over the course of a modern lifetime, television viewing accounts for a significant amount of information taken in by viewers. Within that consumption lies a potential problem. Viewers may learn erroneous messages about people and the world. Since television has characterized Latinos in ways that have emphasized cultural stereotypes, viewers may learn to perceive them in a corresponding manner. A questionnaire was administered to a sample of 403 students from five universities and two community colleges located in Northern California. The respondents completed a seventy-one item questionnaire. Five key variables were utilized to measure relationships between them. The key variables included: learning about Latinos from television, positive perceptions of Latinos, negative Latino stereotypes, willingness to communicate with Latinos, and self-esteem. Frequency, correlation, and regression analyses indicated that there was significant interplay between the key variables. The results revealed an association between learning about Latinos from television and negative Latino stereotypes. Similarly, lower willingness to communicate with Latinos was associated with negative Latino stereotypes. However, higher willingness to communicate with Latinos was associated with positive perceptions of Latinos. Likewise, willingness to communicate with Latinos was positively associated with self-esteem. A multiple regression analysis indicated that learning about Latinos from television and lower willingness to communicate with Latinos were predictors of negative Latino stereotypes. Conversely, a second regression analysis indicated that higher willingness to communicate with Latinos and positive interaction with Latinos were predictors of positive perceptions of Latinos.

Pages

100

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